Macular degeneration has replaced diabetes as the most common cause of blindness. Age-related macular degeneration (AMD) is much more common now than it was a few decades ago. After age 50, odds for AMD occurring are one in ten. This is why it’s important to understand its symptoms, and the nutritional protocol to prevent AMD. And for anyone already experiencing this disease, it’s important to discover what treatments reverse AMD vision loss.
What Macular Degeneration Is
“I don`t think there’s any doubt we have an epidemic”, asserts Dr. Paul Beaumont, an ophthalmologist with the Macular Degeneration Foundation. He has seen a tenfold increase of AMD in the last 30 years.
Like cancer AMD develops slowly, progressively affecting the macula. The macula is located in the center of the retina, which is inside of the eyeball sending signals through the optic nerve to the brain. The macula is responsible for focusing central vision.
A lack of focus makes it difficult to see well straight ahead while retaining decent peripheral vision. Retina and macula cells deteriorate when the tiny blood vessels in the eye become damaged or clogged and cellular nourishment, oxygenation, and waste removal are interfered with. Then the cone cells in the macula lutea wither and die. Blindness is not sudden, but impaired vision is.
Early symptoms include blurred straight ahead vision with intact peripheral vision, wavy lines when viewing a grid, poor color discrimination, and extreme sensitivity to glare, making it difficult to see well in bright light or to switch focus from bright to dark. The most serious symptom is central scotoma. Central scotoma is a gray, black, or blind spot in the middle of one’s vision. Some levels of advanced macular degeneration can exhibit more than one scotoma.
There are two basic forms of macular degeneration: Wet and dry. Wet AMD occurs when eyeball blood vessels are poorly formed or damaged and bleed internally. This is when serious scotomas are likely to occur. Dry AMD is less serious. Little yellow spots called drusens are observed on the eye. They are lipids formed from waste materials. With soft drusens there is no or little impaired vision. Hard drusens herald early AMD vision problems.
Sunglasses, especially blue blockers, are recommended to ease glare and UV rays into the eyes. Exercise helps the blood flow while increasing oxygen levels in those blood cells. Oxygen is the most important nutrient of all for eliminating waste and metabolizing other nutrients. There are supplements available that directly oxygenate the blood.
For eye health, another important nutrient is lutein. Lutein and zeaxanthin are two carotenoids that make up the macular pigment, which protects the macula from ultra-violet and blue light. AMD victims have low macular lutein density. Foods high in lutein and zeaxanthin are eggs, spinach and other greens, broccoli, corn, peas, cantalope and blueberries. A daily serving of Absolute Greens is one of the best ways to make sure you are getting adequate amounts of these and other carotenoids.
Since some of the macular damage is from oxidative stress, anti-oxidant supplements and foods high in antioxidants should be a major part of one’s diet. Leafy greens with purple and red fruits should be a focus. Absolute Greens has a high ORAC rating, signaling its abundant supply of antioxidants. Omega-3 fatty acids from eating fatty fish or from taking Omega 3 Plus is also essential for eye health.
Reversing AMD and Restoring Vision
Most of mainstream medicine is convinced that AMD is irreversible once it begins. The consensus is that you are destined for blindness with AMD. However, recent developments have demonstrated that there are ways to reverse AMD by combining nutritional supplements with energetic protocols, such as acupuncture or micro-current therapies.
Most mainstream techniques for AMD are invasive, create other problems, and usually do not restore lost vision. Photocoagulation or photodynamic therapies which are laser applications are the least invasive. But they tend to only stop AMD from progressing further if they do work.
There are various nutritional eye support cocktails that will stop or at least slow AMD’s advance toward blindness if started early enough. These eye support cocktails contain high amounts of lutein and zeaxanthin with other supportive nutrients.
Dr. Paul Beaumont recommends avoiding processed oils and margarines. Cold pressed olive oil and saturated fats, such as butter and coconut oil, help protect the eyes from peroxidation which steals electrons from the eyes’ lipids. Lipids, or fats, are the primary substance of eye tissue.
These nutritional tips can stop early AMD from progressing further. Some testimonials say their early AMD was completely reversed through better nutritional choices and prepared eye support supplemental cocktails. Though certainly well worth trying, nutritional treatments alone are not 100% reliable for restoring lost vision.
Energetic Treatments Yield the Best Results
A study in New Mexico from 2003 to 2004 used traditional acupuncture to successfully restore some or all lost vision on 66% of ophthalmology diagnosed AMD cases. The highest percentage of improvement went to both close and distant vision, even to the point of discovering more lines on eyesight charts. Color discrimination improvement was not nearly as prevalent.
A technological application of acupuncture based understanding is micro-current stimulation (MCS) therapy. Extremely low currents are placed on acupuncture points near the eyes. This protocol can be done at home by oneself or with the aid of a family member if one is willing to invest in the apparatus. The machines are in the $700 range.
There are more and more medical practitioners with different backgrounds using this therapy on AMD patients. Each session is less than an hour. Technically, micro-current stimulation (MCS) is an enhanced adaptation of an FDA approved therapy used by surgeons and rehabilitation specialists to promote healing and pain relief. The FDA allows the phrase “useful for general pain relief” for now. Using it for macular degeneration reversal is considered “off label” use. But that shouldn’t stop one from accessing this treatment for general pain relief in the eyes.
The extremely mild currents stimulate the nerves that in turn increase blood circulation and oxygenation. That’s the western viewpoint. A more traditional Eastern explanation could be that Chi energy is stimulated, and Chi is the subtle energy that conducts physical life.
Either way, it works and works well for reversing macular degeneration and restoring lost vision. Some use equipment that allows choosing various frequencies to resonate with each area of distress. This is frequency specific micro-current (FSM) therapy, which should be applied by a health professional. The wrong frequency could exacerbate negative conditions. Products for home use have less frequency options.
Dr. Edward Kondrot, ophthalmologist and homeopathic doctor, endorses FSM applications as an improvement over the older limited frequency machines. Dr. Kondrot also advises having a high level of zinc in your blood before undertaking micro-current therapies for maximum benefits.
It’s good to know there are less expensive and less harmful treatments that do reverse even advanced AMD to prevent blindness, a situation that was once considered impossible.
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